Tuesday, March 08, 2005

poireaux & st jacques

For dinner I prepared a first course, leek fettuccine and some "scallops" (cut circles) of white fish, as I live too far inland to be able to purchase coquilles. Lake Huron, even though frozen way beyond the shore, provides lovely fish if you are brave enough to face the cold and chop through the ice for a catch.

I cut my leeks where the white part ends and saved the green for potato soup later in the week. Next I sliced the whites length-wise into julienne, which I poached until tender in a pot of salted water. After draining them I began a sauce of leek broth and some cream with a bay leaf, reducing it by half. I tossed the leeks in the cream sauce and made a bed of them in the serving dishes.

From the filets of fish that had been skinned I cut circles to resemble scallops and dusted them with a sprinkle of flour and seared them in a splash of oil and a dollop of butter until a rich brown color on both sides and the flesh had just set. I removed them to the bed of leeks and added some minced shallots and mushrooms to the pan. When the mushrooms and shallots were golden, I deglazed the pan with some verjus and added some cream and again reduced the sauce by half. After spooning the sauce over the "scallops," I sprinkled on some bread crumbs mixed with grated cheese and a pinch of cayenne and placed them into the oven to heat through and then passed a fire shovel with coals over the top to brown the crumbs slightly.

The chef recommends: Pessac blanc 2003 Château Haut Lagrange

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